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Stow is a package management system for source packages. You possibly know the scenario: You install some software by compiling it from the source and running make install, some days later you want get rid of it again but there is no make uninstall or you haven't the Makefile anymore. Using stow this is the past. Instead of installing the software direct to /usr/local/{bin,lib,man,…} you install to /usr/local/stow/<software-version> and stow creates symlinks to the usual places for you.

Download from or use apt-get install stow on Debian


Here is how to use it:

Installing new software

Note the use of –prefix to install to the stow directory. If the software doesn't use the autoconf mechanism you need to edit the Makefile yourself.

$> ./configure --prefix=/usr/local/stow/software-1.2.3
$> make
#> make install
#> cd /usr/local/stow
#> stow software-1.2.3

Removing the software again

#> cd /usr/local/stow
#> stow -D software-1.2.3
#> rm -rf software-1.2.3
stow.txt · Last modified: 2007/02/09 17:53 by